Seeing With New Eyes – Grieving As One Who Has Hope

Good morning, sweet friends! I want you to know I have been thinking about y’all SO much this weekend! Those of you who have suffered the loss of a loved one have been the object of many a prayer and today I desperately want to encourage your heart!

I couldn’t help but think about how hard our days can be when we are surround by the dark, gloomy cloud of grief. It presses in. It threatens to crush us. Like a ceaseless wave…it pelts us and leaves us feeling weary, worn out and like we’ll never be able to get our heads above water again.

And while I long to help your heart find healing, I’m very aware that your pain is personal. The dynamics of each death is very different. Our personalities are very different. Therefore, our grieving process will look very different.

But, regardless of how different the the dynamics and the process are for each of us, there should be one foundational truth blazing each step of our painful path to healing – And that truth is HOPE.

Today, I want to encourage you with the reality that this isn’t it. What we see with our eyes, what we hear with our ears, what we touch with our hands, even what we feel with our hearts…all of it is temporal. I know we know that – but when a loved one dies, our faith is put to the test. And through the fiery trial of grief, we find that our Heavenly Father remains true to His Word. He gives us an unexplainable peace and assurance that eternity is just as real as He is…and so we hope again.

You see, knowing that what God says about eternity is true is where hope takes root in the soil of a broken heart.

Hope-full grieving doesn’t mean our hearts don’t ache with a longing to see their face, to hear their voice, to hold their hands and to share a smile. It just means we filter our pain through the truth of God’s promise of eternal life. It means we grieve…but we grieve as one who has hope.

1 Thessalonians 4:13 says...

“But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep.” (ESV)

Today, I know your heart may be hurting. Today, you may feel as though you can’t even catch your breath. Right now, it may all seem so surreal to you. But you have not escaped the view of your Heavenly Father for one second, sweet friend. He loves you with a love that is as eternal as He is – and He still has a plan for your life.

There will be a day when He will replace the ashes of your grief with beauty; your mourning heart will one day be able to smile again; the weakness you feel today will become your strength tomorrow. (Isaiah 61:3)

Allow yourself time to grieve, but never allow yourself to grieve as one who has no hope…because you, my sister, have an unmistakeable, unshakeable hope!

The Word of God is brimming with precious promises about our eternal existence, our hope in this life and our future hope of heaven. So, please take a few minutes and encourage your heart with the Word, my friend. Nothing can speak more gently to your heart than the powerful Word of God.

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you.’ 1 Peter 1:3-4

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16

“Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life.” John 5:24

“For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.” John 6:40

“so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.” Titus 3:7

“And this is the promise that he made to us — eternal life.” 1 John 2:25

“Let your steadfast love, O LORD, be upon us,even as we hope in you.” Psalm 33:22

“Why are you cast down, O my soul,and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,my salvation and my God.” Psalm 43:5

“You are my hiding place and my shield;I hope in your word.” Psalm 119:14

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” Romans 15:13

“in hope of eternal life, which God, who never lies, promised before the ages began” Titus 1:2

“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God” Revelation 21:1-3

There are a plethora of other verses that speak of the hope we have in Christ. Verses that I pray your heart will wallow in when you feel like you can’t go on.

Today, if you’re grieving, sweet sister…go ahead and grieve…you’re heart needs to mourn its loss – but grieve as a woman who has hope – because that’s what the resurrection is all about!

And remember – it’s okay to go there…just don’t allow yourself to stay there!

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For those of you who follow our Scripture Dig posts, I think you’ll enjoy the next several weeks as we pick our favorite posts from each other’s personal blogs. Today, I’ve listed my favorite “Terilynnu.com” post! Click here for a treat from Scripture Dig’s fearless leader! I know you’ll love her as much as we do!

6 Comments

  1. Wow! Thank you so much for sharing, Stephanie. I literally just hit publish on a post about my 22 year old friend's passing (http://debraweiss.net/2011/05/there-are-no-words/).

    I logged onto Facebook (we're friends) and saw your post come up and I just had to click over here. Thank you so much for sharing these words.

    I'll bookmark this post so I can come back over the coming days and remind myself of these truths.

    It's so hard to lose a childhood friend especially to a tragic disease like leukemia. I have known my friend and her family for such a long time and so many prayed for her healing.

    I know God has a plan but the pain is still deep some days. If you wouldn't mind, please keep Carina's family in your prayers. <3

    Love and hugs,
    Debra

  2. Debra ~ Isn't God amazing! His timing is perfect!

    I'm so thankful you stopped by and shared your story. Please know that I'm praying for Carina's family and for you!

    (I popped over to your Facebook page and sent you a personal message.)

  3. Thank You for your post today, it had been a rough day, I'm going to mark those words in my Bible and read them aloud to myself often.

    Thank You for your words and prayers, God Bless.

    Julie

  4. Julie ~ You are in my prayers, sweet friend! I know these days are difficult, but hang on to Jesus! He really will hold you through this.

  5. Stephanie, I have been sharing your blog on Grieving with my sisters. This was our first Mother's Day without our Mother and all 4 of my sisters have told me how much you have helped all of us! Your words are so true and so beautiful! Love to you my friend!

  6. Kelly ~ You have four sisters! Wow! What a blessing! Thank you so much for sharing that with me! I can't think of a better encouragement than to know I might have said something to encourage others!

    Missing our mom's can be such a painful thing, but I'm praying for you and your family as you find healing for your hurting heart!

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